Radio Towers Removed from Tempe's 'A' Mountain

Radio tower on 'A' Mountain in Tempe in 2015
The radio towers atop Tempe's "A" Mountain are shown in 2015. | Via Flickr (user freakinhippie)

One of the Phoenix area's best-known natural landmarks has been restored to a more natural look.

"A" Mountain, which rises over downtown Tempe and Arizona State University's Sun Devil Stadium, no longer sports the radio towers that have been there for decades, FOX 10 reported last month.

The mountain, also known as Tempe Butte or Hayden Butte, has had some sort of man-made structure on it since the 1880s, according to historians. The intent now is to keep the top of the mountain bare, officials told FOX 10. "Nothing will ever get put back up there," said Tempe's historic preservation officer, John Southard.

"A" Mountain's colloquial name comes from the large concrete-and-steel "A" that represents ASU. This iteration of the letter is 60 feet tall and dates to the 1950s. It's often been a target of vandals and fans of whatever team ASU's football team is about to face; officially, it's now part of a city preserve and such activities are prohibited.

The mountain's short, steep hiking trail is a favorite of Tempe residents and ASU students.

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